FOI release

FOI requests made by private companies

How many FOI requests are made by private companies and what is the cost to the Department?


  • Date requested: 18 March 2011
  • Publish date: 29 March 2011
  • Updated: 30 March 2011


Can the department provide the number of FOI requests made by private companies each month, and how much for each request?


The department does not hold information relating to the first part of the request. The Freedom of Information Act is applicant and motive blind. In other words requestors are not obliged to say who they are. Statistics relating to requests from any particular categories of requestor cannot therefore be maintained.

The Ministry of Justice website is where the FOI statistics on requests that the department has considered under the Act (including the outcome, internal reviews and appeals to the Information Commissioners Office), alongside other central government bodies are located.

With regard to the second part of the request, the department has interpreted that this refers to how much each FOI request costs. The department holds information within scope of that part of the request and a copy of the information is attached.

The information supplied continues to be protected by copyright. The user is free to use it for their own purposes, including for private study and non-commercial research, and for any other purpose authorised by an exception in current copyright law.

Documents (except photographs) can be also used in the UK without requiring permission for the purposes of news reporting. Any other re-use, for example commercial publication, would require the permission of the copyright holder.

Most documents produced by a government department will be protected by Crown Copyright. Most Crown copyright information can be re-used under the Open Government Licence.

For information about the OGL and about re-using Crown Copyright information please see the National Archives website.